What do neuroanatomical networks reveal about the ontology of human cognitive abilities?

Daniel Kristanto, Xinyang Liu, Werner Sommer, Andrea Hildebrandt*, Changsong Zhou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Over the last decades, cognitive psychology has come to a fair consensus about the human intelligence ontological structure. However, it remains an open question whether anatomical properties of the brain support the same ontology. The present study explored the ontological structure derived from neuroanatomical networks associated with performance on 15 cognitive tasks indicating various abilities. Results suggest that the brain-derived (neurometric) ontology partly agrees with the cognitive performance-derived (psychometric) ontology complemented with interpretable differences. Moreover, the cortical areas associated with different inferred abilities are segregated, with little or no overlap. Nevertheless, these spatially segregated cortical areas are integrated via denser white matter structural connections as compared with the general brain connectome. The integration of ability-related cortical networks constitutes a neural counterpart to the psychometric construct of general intelligence, while the consistency and difference between psychometric and neurometric ontologies represent crucial pieces of knowledge for theory building, clinical diagnostics, and treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104706
Number of pages19
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 19 Aug 2022

Scopus Subject Areas

  • General

User-Defined Keywords

  • Cognitive neuroscience
  • Systems neuroscience


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